New census data highlights Hamilton’s ‘incredibly diverse’ public schools
Published on June 21, 2022 at 11:15 a.m.
The Hamilton Public School Board conducted a voluntary census to advance its equity action plan. The results show an “incredibly diverse” community.
The Hamilton Public School Board conducted a voluntary census last year and the results reflect the “incredibly diverse” demographics of the community.
The Hamilton-Wentworth District School Board (HWDSB) says the first-ever student census is key to advancing its equity action plan.
“These results – combined with the 2019 Staff Census and the 2020 Employment Equity Audit – will help us understand our communities so we can make evidence-based decisions to support equity. , student achievement and well-being,” said Sue Dunlop, acting director of education. .
“Findings released today show that (Hamilton Public) schools are incredibly diverse places, where students speak 152 languages at home, represent many cultures around the world, and identify across gender in ways development that we want to respect and honor,” the HWDSB posted. .
The board-wide response rate was 48%, with 24,177 students or their families submitting a response.
According to the census, 62% of students described their racial background as white. Other responses include South Asians (10%), Middle Easterners (10%) and Blacks (8%).
Christianity is the religion or spiritual affiliation of 28% of the students who responded, followed by no religious or spiritual affiliation (21%), Muslim (21%) and atheist (10%).
English was the first language of 88% of students surveyed. Arabic was 6%, Urdu 3%, and French and Punjabi 2%.
Meanwhile, 48% of students surveyed identified themselves as a boy or a man, 47% answered as a girl or a woman, 2% answered as non-binary and questioned, and 1% said they identified as gender fluids.
When asked if they were transgender, 3% of students surveyed said yes, 4% were unsure, and 94% said no.
Students in grades five through 12 were asked about their sexual orientation and reported being heterosexual (68%), questioning (13%), bisexual (8%), asexual (5%), and pansexual ( 4%). ).
“The HWDSB approached the census with sensitivity after consulting with students, families, staff and community members,” the board said in a statement. “The board invited students, families and community members to attend the Student Census information sessions and hosted a dedicated community information session.”
In the responses, 11% of the students declared themselves to be a person with a disability. The most common types of disabilities were attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (5%), mental disorders (4%), learning (3%) and attention deficit disorder and autism spectrum (2%).
When asked if they were born in Canada, 84% of students said yes, 15% said no, and less than 1% were unsure.
Students asked about their citizenship status answered that they were Canadian (87%), landed immigrants and/or permanent residents (5%), unsure (5%), Aboriginal (1%) and international students (1%) . hundred).
The board says its next steps “will be grounded in anti-racist, anti-oppression approaches to data integration, reporting and use.”
“Staff are now developing a plan to involve communities in defining this process and to ensure that the data is used with the utmost care, for the benefit of students and to address inequalities,” according to the council.
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